SoFi's first PR campaign answers the question, 'How do I ask for a raise?'

The company's first communications-driven campaign is taking a page from Small Business Saturday to help customers know their value.

SAN FRANCISCO: SoFi wants to help you get a raise.

The fintech upstart is rolling out the Raise Week campaign this month. The push aims to answer some of customers’ most-asked questions, such as "How do I ask for a raise?" and "When is the right time?"

Starting May 15, SoFi staffers will participate in an online series that will offer users tips on communicating their value in the workplace and tell inspirational stories. The company will hold workshops in eight U.S. cities including New York, Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, and Washington, DC, on negotiating pay raises, non-monetary benefits, and other topics. Career expert Nicole Lapin will appear at the New York event.

"SoFi’s mission is to help our key audience reach their career, relationship, and financial goals," said COO Joanne Bradford. "This touches two of them: career and financial. [Customers are] not always equipped or confident when asking for a raise. This is something you have to plan. You need to have an understanding of your opportunity, your company, and your value, which is one of the big pillars of the campaign."

She noted SoFi holds nearly 500 events annually, and its 12-member career team coaches about 250 customers each week.

"We want to tell the whole story of the benefits we offer our consumers," Bradford explained. "Seventy percent of our customers don’t know about everything we offer. We’re number one in a lot of these categories, but we think it will be a real differentiator once they know the full array of services we have, from career coaching to events."

The average SoFi student loan customer is about 33 years old and has a student loan balance of about $75,000, more than twice the national average. A SoFi survey also found 50% of young, college-educated professionals had not negotiated their own salaries, and 54% said they don’t know their "market value."

The campaign is the brainchild of VP of communications and policy Jim Prosser, who introduced the concept in late January. The company developed and executed the campaign, its first PR-focused push, entirely in-house. SoFi is pitching a range of media outlets from business to lifestyle to maximize impact.

"We modeled this on Small Business Saturday; we were inspired by what American Express did," Bradford said. "We want everybody to participate in this from all sides of the equation. We think this is going to be a multi-year effort."

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